Five Things To Know About The Vikings vs Cowboys Week 9 Game


Oct 27, 2013; Detroit, MI, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) changes the play at the line of scrimmage during 1st quarter of a game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday, the 1-6 Minnesota Vikings take on the 4-4  Dallas Cowboys live from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.  This game is Fox Sports “NFL Game of the Week”.  Yes, seriously.

Here are five things to know about the upcoming game:

Nov 22, 2012; Arlington, TX, USA; Fox announcers Troy Aikman (left) and Joe Buck on the field prior to the game with the Dallas Cowboys playing against the Washington Redskins on Thanksgiving at Cowboys Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The game will be called by Joe Buck and Troy Aikman with Pam Oliver.  This game will be handled by Fox Sports since it is a all NFC contest.  Pam Oliver always does a stellar job on the sidelines, but Joe Buck and Troy Aikman are two of the most despised announcers in sports.  To make matters worse for Vikings fans, Aikman will be calling the game for his former team, the Dallas Cowboys.

Nov 6, 2011; Nashville, TN, USA; NFL referee Jeff Triplette (42) reviews a play in a game between the Tennessee Titans and the Cincinnati Bengals during the second half at LP Field. The Bengals beat the Titans 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Triplette will act as head referee for the contest.  Triplette is a retired colonel of the Army Reserve who was awareded a Bronze Star for his actions in the Persian Gulf War.  He began as an NFL field judge in 1996 and has since moved his way up to head referee.  He is best known for an incident in 1999 when he accidentally threw a penalty flag weighted with ball bearings into the eye of Cleveland Browns player Orlando Brown.

Oct 27, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Green Bay Packers wide receiver Jordy Nelson (87) catches a touchdown pass against Minnesota Vikings cornerback Josh Robinson (21) during the first quarter at Mall of America Field at H.H.H. Metrodome. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

This is two of the worst defenses in the NFL going head to head.  If not for the Philadelphia Eagles, this game would feature the two teams in the NFL that give up the most yards per game.  The Cowboys surrender the most at 422.5 yards per game while the Vikings give up 401.6 yards of total offense.  They are especially bad against the pass, where Minnesota has given up 16 passing touchdowns and the Cowboys have given up 15.

Oct 13, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders performs during a time out in the game against the Washington Redskins at AT

This is the Vikings maiden voyage to AT&T stadium.  Since “Jerry’s House” was first used for NFL games in 2009, the Vikings have never been guests in the billion dollar stadium until Sunday.  Minnesota hasn’t played visitor to Dallas since the 2007 season, when the Vikings came up short against the Cowboys 14-24.

Oct 27, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder (7) escapes from Green Bay Packers safety Morgan Burnett (42) during the second quarter at Mall of America Field at H.H.H. Metrodome. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Ponder getting the starting nod at QB over a healthy Josh Freeman.  The quarterback situation for the Vikings just keeps getting weirder.  Just when you think the Vikings are willing to give Freeman another chance after his horrible outing against the New York Giants, the team decides to start Christian Ponder after they had seemingly given up on him during the season.  At this point, Matt Cassel hasn’t even been an option for the squad.  Apparently, the Vikings like spending money on quarterbacks to have them sit on the bench.

The game will be broadcast on local Fox affiliates.  Kickoff is scheduled for noon Central Time.  Check your local listings for availability.